Business & Finance Advertising & sales & Marketing

Give your Online Store a Makeover

When you have a store on the high street, giving it a makeover is easy. Slap some new paint on the walls, rearrange the shelves and revamp the window display, and in no time at all you have a fabulous looking shop to entice new customers in through the doors. But if your store is online as opposed to bricks and mortar, how can you give it a makeover?

Revamp Your Online Store to Keep it Fresh

When you sell online as opposed to selling goods in a store in the real world, your shop is basically a website with a shopping cart system of some description and instead of garment rails or shelves of produce you have product listings. When the customer clicks on a listing, they are taken to a page with a further descriptions, specifications, customer reviews, pictures, etc., and from there they are given the opportunity to add the item to a virtual shopping cart. So, as you can see, the only real opportunity you have to revamp your online store is to change the way it ‘looks' to your customers.

Why Bother Giving an Online Store a Makeover?

Just because your online store looked slick and professional when it first went live, it doesn't mean it still looks as good today, so a periodic makeover is a good way of keep everything fresh and interesting. If you coded your website from scratch, it may require a lot of work to change the fonts, layout and images on the site, but if your online store is hosted by one of the large e-Commerce sites, it may only take a few clicks of the mouse to transform your tired looking store into a fabulous Santa's Grotto.

Great Ways to Give Your Online Store a Fresh New Look

Changing everything about your store layout is probably not such a great idea unless you are prepared to spend a lot of time dealing with unexpected glitches and problems in the aftermath of rolling out the new updates. However, it is usually the simple things that have the biggest impact, so before you start making sweeping alterations to your site, try these:
  • Updating product descriptions: make the descriptions as interesting and informative as possible. Use correct spelling and grammar!
  • Update product images: update existing images and add more than one for each product
  • Improve site navigation: this makes it easier for your customers to locate products, plus it keeps the search engines happy
  • Simplify the site if it looks cluttered and busy
  • Add a blog if you don't already have one
  • Add some customer reviews: Consider adding all reviews, good and bad. Why add bad reviews? Because it adds a layer of transparency. If all you have are glowing reviews, it will look fishy to consumers.

Things to Avoid When Making Changes to an Online Store

Doing anything that negatively impacts on the customer experience is a big no-no. This would include adding lots of pop-ups, flashing images, excessive advertising, and anything that might encourage a customer to back click. It is also a bad idea to offer ‘customer support' and then not bother including any kind of contact telephone number or email address. If in doubt, ask yourself: "would I buy from this site?" If the answer is: "no," then enough said.

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